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Italian TV  Premium Sport reports that Chelsea manager Antonio Conte will part ways with the club in the next few hours.

Conte joined Chelsea in the summer of 2016 after having managed the Italian national team at Euro 2016: he won the Premier League during his debut season but failed even to reach the top four in this one, a frustration partially mitigated by the success in the FA Cup final against Manchester United in the past weekend.

According to Premium, the termination of the manager’s contract is a contentious issue though, as the club wants to end it by mutual consent but Conte intends to get sacked to cover also the year left on the deal or to get a good payout.

It’s well known that the Italian boss’ relationship with Chelsea board fell out in the last months, mainly because Conte reckons it wasn’t given enough credit to his work and also because he wasn’t trusted during transfer market negotiations.

Possible substitutes to replace him are former AS Roma and Barcelona manager Luis Enrique and Fulham boss Slavisa Jokanovic, as Napoli’s Maurizio Sarri seems keen to join Zenit St. Petersburg at the moment.

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Chelsea goalkeeper Willy Caballero was confirmed in the 23-men-squad selected by Argentina coach Jorge Sampaoli for this summer World Cup in Russia.

The top-notch player ruled-out by this squad was Serie A join-top-scorer Mauro Icardi, who netted the ball 29 times during this campaign – along with Lazio’s Ciro Immobile-  helping Inter to go back to Champions League after 6 years of absence.

The list in full:

Goalkeepers: Sergio Romero, Willy Caballero, Franco Armani

Defenders: Gabriel Mercado, Javier Mascherano, Nicolas Otamendi, Federico Fazio, Marcos Rojo, Nicolas Tagliafico, Marcos Acuna, Cristian Ansaldi

Midfielders: Manuel Lanzini, Maximiliano Meza, Lucas Biglia, Ever Banega, Giovani Lo Celso, Angel Di Maria, Cristian Pavon, Eduardo Salvio

Forwards: Paulo Dybala, Lionel Messi, Sergio Aguero, Gonzalo Higuain.

 

 

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Three Chelsea players make Belgium 28-men-provisional squad for Russia 2018 World Cup: Eden Hazard, Thibaut Courtois and Michy Batshuayi are among the players called by coach Roberto Martinez before travelling to Eastern Europe, five of these will be withdrawn on 04/06, when the list will be reduced to 23 players.

Surprisingly Chelsea target Radja Nainggolan was ruled out of the list, officially for tactical reasons.

The full list:

Goalkeepers: Thibaut Courtois (Chelsea), Simon Mignolet (Liverpool), Koen Casteels (Wolfsburg), Matz Sels (Newcastle United)

Defenders: Toby Alderweireld (Tottenham Hotspur), Dedryck Boyata (Celtic), Laurent Ciman (LAFC), Leander Dendoncker (Anderlecht), Christian Kabasele (Watford), Vincent Kompany (Manchester City), Jordan Lukaku (Lazio), Thomas Meunier (Paris Saint-Germain), Thomas Vermaelen (Barcelona), Jan Vertonghen (Tottenham Hotspur)

Midfielders: Yannick Carrasco (Dalian Yifang), Nacer Chadli (West Bromwich Albion), Kevin De Bruyne (Manchester City), Mousa Dembele (Tottenham Hotspur), Marouane Fellaini (Manchester United), Adnan Januzaj (Real Sociedad), Youri Tielemans (Monaco), Axel Witsel (Tianjin Quanjian)

Forwards: Michy Batshuayi (Chelsea), Christian Benteke (Crystal Palace), Eden Hazard (Chelsea), Thorgan Hazard (Borussia Monchengladbach), Romelu Lukaku (Manchester United), Dries Mertens (Napoli)

 

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Chelsea legend and former Conte’s team-mate Gianluca Vialli said the Italian coach “can’t wait to leave Chelsea, as he can’t stand that they don’t consult him for transfer market deals”

The Blues manager seems increasingly likely to either be sacked or walk away at the end of the season, or even before that, as today’s 3-1 home defeat to Spurs practically destroys hopes of a top four Premier League finish.

“Conte can’t wait to leave Chelsea,” Vialli told Sky Sport Italia in his role as a pundit.

“He can’t stand that they sell or buy players without consulting him. The truth is, Chelsea would like a manager who is more of a club man.”

If Conte is released, it’s entirely possible he could return to the Italy bench, which remains vacant.

“Whether it’s the Nazionale or Paris Saint-Germain, he’ll find a place where he can start winning something important again. There will be a queue of contracts for him to sign.”

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Chelsea rising star Ethan Ampadu is out for the rest of the season after fracturing his ankle in the Youth League clash against Real Madrid, the London Evening Standard reports.

The injury forced the 17-year-old to withdraw from Ryan Gigg‘s first Wales squad, with the Dragons due to face China and one of Uruguay or the Czech Republic before the end of the month.

Ampadu last represented Chelsea in the 4-0 win over Hull City in the FA Cup fifth round and has been given a number of first-team opportunities by Antonio Conte in all competitions this season.

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Chelsea boss Antonio Conte rules, again, David Luiz and Ross Barkley out for Crystal Palace clash tomorrow.

David Luiz is injured. Also Barkley,” the Italian coach said.

Then I have to check a couple of situations before making the decisions for the game.”

N’Golo Kante missed Sunday’s defeat at Manchester City after fainting following a training session 48 hours before the game.

 The French midfielder has since been given the all-clear following medical tests.“N’Golo is fine. He trained the whole week and he’s in good form,” Conte said.

“Last week, on Friday, it was very cold. After the training session he passed out briefly in the dressing room.

“The doctor brought him to have many check-ups, to understand his physical condition, but it was all clear.

“I think on Sunday he was well, but at the same time it was right not to take the risk.

“He’s OK. Every check-up is OK, perfect.”

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Chelsea defender David Luiz is set to miss next month clashes due to a knee injury.

The Brazil international will probably skip also the crucial game with Spurs, scheduled on 1 April, as he is facing another month out to try to recover from an issue that has been conditioning his performances and playing since last autumn.

The 30-year-old has also been to Barcelona to see a specialist about his knee issues, which can be traced back to a crunching challenge by Manchester City star Sergio Agüero in December 2016.

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Former Chelsea and Wimbledon midfielder Vinnie Jones claimed that Blues players stopped to play for Antonio Conte because they are aware he won’t be at Stamford Bridge next season:

“I don’t think he wants to be there,” he told talkSPORT.

To me, it looks like he doesn’t want to. I think he knows he’s going to go, I think the players know he is going to go, so the players are like ‘all right, we’ll regroup next season’.

“They don’t have a [Frank] Lampard and a John Terry to sort the dressing room out now.”

Jones does not believe Conte should be criticised for the ultra-negative tactics he used against Manchester City, losing 1-0 and collecting the third away defeat in a row:

“If you go up there, it’s a fortress at Man City, the way they are playing – they are invincible at the moment,” Jones concluded.

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Chelsea striker Izzy Brown, on loan to Brighton and Hove Albion in this campaign, is out for season after a knee ligament injury occurred in the FA Cup clash against Crystal Palace.

The 21-year-old is now expected to return to his parent club where he will undergo surgery, before a programme of rehabilitation.

Brown commented on his Instagram profile:

“Not the news I wanted to hear,” he wrote on his post.

“I will come back fitter and stronger and hopefully be ready for the new season.

“Thank you to everyone at Brighton for the love and support they showed towards me, the fans, the staff, & all the players. I’ve met some amazing people here & these memories will be with me forever.”

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According to The Sun on Sunday Real Madrid eyed Chelsea boss Antonio Conte as the possible Zinedine Zidane substitute, should the Frenchman leave the Champions of Europe next summer.

The Merengues manager deal will end next June and the chairman Florentino Perez could decide to let him go.

Conte signed an improved contract at Chelsea last summer but that did not extend the terms of the agreement past the 2018/19 season.

The Blues boss currently earns £10million a season and would likely demand a similar wage in Madrid.

AC Milan were early frontrunners to appoint the Italian coach but their recent woes make a move to the Serie A side not possible for now.

Conte’s relationship with the Chelsea board is not the best at the moment and the former Juventus coach could decide to step out of Stamford Bridge, with Carlo Ancelotti waiting on the sidelines for a return.

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